What is YouTube?
As a fond user of the World Wide Web, I naturally go straight to the best website ever created to find the answer:
Since its creation in 2005 by Chad Hurley, Steve Chen and Jawed Karim, the site has become the second largest search engine, with 100 hours of content uploaded every minute and a billion people watching it. Despite its small beginnings as a place to watch children biting other children, YouTube has become a reputable destination to launch presidential campaigns and to make careers (“Thousands of channels are making six figures a year”). The variety and specificity of content on YouTube means that there is literally something for everyone.
It’s exciting to speculate how the site will develop into the future; however, it’s also interesting to see what changes were planned and how they were introduced. Since the introduction of channels and subscriptions, which made it easier to find and return to content you like, YouTube (at least for me) has become a sole replacement for television. You no longer have to flick through every station on the TV to find what you sort of want to watch; you can find exactly what you need directly, or have it brought to you.
The website is a real testament to the progression of convergence in technology and media. YouTube, however, is not in itself a great resource. Much like the growing majority of the internet, the product is created by the consumers. This means that the site’s greatest asset, above any advertising revenue, is its community of ‘YouTubers’ (which is how they make money, but let’s ignore that for the sentimental value). With the individually tailored homepage of recommendations and subscriptions, the site is a visible extension of your personality. So what does your use of YouTube say about you?